Alexandria Journal of Pediatrics

ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year
: 2017  |  Volume : 30  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 85--93

Intervention program to improve feeding, swallowing, and nutritional problems in children with cerebral palsy


Omneya M Omar1, Mona Khalil1, Hayam M Abd El-Ghany2, Aya M Abdallah1, Tarek E.I Omar1 
1 Department of Pediatrics, Alexandria Medical Faculty, Alexandria University, Alexandria, Egypt
2 Department of Physical Medicine, Rheumatology and Rehabilitation, Alexandria University Hospitals, Alexandria, Egypt

Correspondence Address:
Omneya M Omar
Department of Pediatrics, Alexandria Medical Faculty, Alexandria University, Alexandria 21321
Egypt

Background Most children with cerebral palsy (CP) have feeding problems, which lead to long-term malnutrition and respiratory disease, decreasing the quality of life of children and caregivers and causing early mortality. In developed countries with sufficient resources, high-cost and low-cost medical interventions, ranging from gastrostomy tube feeding to parent training, are available. In Egypt, the former is not widely available, and the latter is both scarce and its effectiveness not evaluated. Aim The study aimed to design and implement a training program to evaluate the effectiveness of a training program, to improve the feeding practices of caregivers of children with CP, to observe the effect on the level of nutritional status, feeding skills, and distress caused during feeding. Patients and methods From Alexandria University Children’s Hospital and its outpatient clinics (neurology and physical medicine), 20 caregivers and their children aged 1–5 years with moderate-severe CP (Gross Motor Fine Classification System III–V) and feeding difficulties were invited to a 10-session training program over 5 days (two sessions/day). Before and after training measures (quantitative and qualitative) were taken during the evaluation session of all children in addition to giving brief advice for caregivers, and follow-up for 3 months was done to evaluate the effect of education on performance and skills of the caregivers. Results The percentage of children with appropriate feeding position was significantly higher in final evaluation (66.7%) compared with preliminary evaluation (5%), and the median meal time was significantly shorter in final evaluation (42.5 min) compared with preliminary evaluation (60 min). The percentage of children and their caregivers gaining new feeding skills was significantly higher in final evaluation (38.9%) compared with preliminary evaluation (0%) (P=0.016). The percentage of children using the utensils appropriately was significantly higher in final evaluation (66.7%) compared with preliminary evaluation (15%) (P=0.004). There was no significant difference in the number of feeding problems, eating and drinking ability classification system level, and the mean weight for age Z score between studied children in preliminary and final evaluations. Conclusion The training program has a beneficial effect on improving feeding practices of children with CP and their caregivers after ten training sessions, with positive consequences for both child and caregiver. Methods of providing cheap food supplementation need to be studied, and further steps must be taken to ensure that services have the motivation and capacity to address this area of need.


How to cite this article:
Omar OM, Khalil M, Abd El-Ghany HM, Abdallah AM, Omar TE. Intervention program to improve feeding, swallowing, and nutritional problems in children with cerebral palsy.Alex J Pediatr 2017;30:85-93


How to cite this URL:
Omar OM, Khalil M, Abd El-Ghany HM, Abdallah AM, Omar TE. Intervention program to improve feeding, swallowing, and nutritional problems in children with cerebral palsy. Alex J Pediatr [serial online] 2017 [cited 2018 Jun 25 ];30:85-93
Available from: http://www.ajp.eg.net/article.asp?issn=1687-9945;year=2017;volume=30;issue=3;spage=85;epage=93;aulast=Omar;type=0